Bullhead Cantina’s cool beets | Bleader

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bullhead Cantina’s cool beets

Posted By on 04.26.12 at 12:52 PM

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Roast these and bathe them in a citrus reduction and youve got yourself a damn good taco
  • Roast these and bathe them in a citrus reduction and you've got yourself a damn good taco
Someone—I won’t shame him by divulging his name—recently told me he’s “over beets.”

I assume he meant he’s over them in the same way one is over boyfriend jeans or Odd Future or cupcakes or Record Store Day, things that were cool for a time but—now that everyone’s into them—aren’t so cool anymore, even though there’s nothing inherently off-putting about them (except for Odd Future; they became cool by virtue of being off-putting).

The blasé beet guy is operating under the assumption that a vegetable, like a fashion trend, can go out of style—as if a vegetable’s cachet has some kind of limited life span. My god.

To prove him wrong, I found a beet that will resurrect the root vegetable’s place in the hierarchy of hipness. It’s inside a taco, which sounds contrived until you bite into it and realize what a divine thing a charred-yet-juicy-on-the-inside beet can be, especially when bathed in a citrus reduction and nestled inside a handmade corn tortilla. This beet was downright meaty.

The beet taco is one of six vegetarian options on the 13-taco menu at Bullhead Cantina, a dim, pared-down spot in Humboldt Park just up the street from Flying Saucer. I’m not even vegetarian, but I like that this is a place that gets creative with veggie tacos. Not a single one of them includes beans. One does, however, pair grilled sweet potato with pickled cabbage, roasted corn, and an avocado-lime sauce, which sounded delicious. But it still wasn’t as good as the beet.

On the carnivorous side, the pastor taco—with its hunks of cumin-spiked pork and cubes of pineapple—was the standout. It was superior to the carnitas slow-cooked in banana leaves (kind of bland) and the tamarind-glazed fish (fine but nothing remarkable). That isn’t to say the pork was merely better than OK. It was good. Really. It’s just that I’m kind of over pork.

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